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Angry Chipmunks

Friday, October 27, 2017

His day started out iffy. 

A mourning dove came in way too low. A bit unnerving, but he held his ground.

I'm shooting from the studio window, laughing already.

He'd barely gotten his pouches half filled with sunflower hearts and corn when a challenger with a ratty tail arrived and pounced on him. Aaack!!

And the Chipmunk Rumble began.

The two animals became a roiling ball of fur and fury

with brief pauses for breath.  Our hero is the redder, smaller animal on the right. Rattytail is the grayer one on the left. Note open-mouth breathing. This is hard work.

I noticed a disconcerting pattern to their combat, and that was that they seemed to be going for each other's underbelly, particularly the groin. What that's about, I don't want to know, but I would emphatically not want an angry chipmunk going at my groin. Even though it would take 600 chipmunks in a burlap sack to equal the weight of one Zick. Could still do a lot of damage down there.

 And I was already terrified to handle a chipmunk. My childhood friend, when we were both maybe 8, ignored my warning and picked up an injured chipmunk with her bare hands. I was glad it was her bare hands and not mine. I remember an impressive amount of blood and a quick attempt to drop it as it hung on like a pitbull. I never could tell her anything; she had to do it her way. I bet she's never picked up another chipmunk though.

Redman's got Rattytail down and is biting a particularly tender place. Yoww!! Chipmunks play dirty.
My friend Harma, who knows a lot about animals and anatomy, being a physical therapist and dog trainer, commented,   Groin=Femoral artery=death. You know a dog is a true fighter vs. making a lot of noise when it goes for the inside of the thigh. Them chiptymunks are fierce!

No kidding, Harma! Ever wonder what an angry chipmunk looks like? Look at the ear position, the narrowed eyes. Another micro-breather.

And they're at it again. Biting...what?? Each other's spines? Ow!! Good Lord!

Now it's mano a mano, nose to nose. It's gotten personal.

And amazingly, Rattytail has had enough, and heads for the hills. Our hero has vanquished the challenger!

He follows up with another drubbing, just to make sure Rattytail gets the message.

Yep, you're gittin' gone, son. Redman drives his point home.

Winded, looking decidedly worse for wear, with rough fur and nicks in his neat stripes, Redman goes back to foraging.

It's a good thing chipmunks aren't the size of coyotes. As my friend Al Batt says of chickadees...It's a good thing they aren't the size of hawks. We'd never go outside. 


What a funny story Julie. They are scrappy little fellas. Thanks for the laugh and I had to share.

A few years ago my young daughter screamed for my help rescuing a chipmunk from the neighbor cat. Seemed like a good idea until I found myself bent at the waist, with both hands on the cat and a chipmunk up the inside of my blue jeans - as far as he could go. One of the longest moments of my life. I let go of the cat and dropped my pants. Disaster averted. Ha.

Ratty tails here mean the " specialist " almost got em
Ginger cat that ignores birds ( belled anyway)
Does like froggies.
Love the previous Tale/ up the jeans!!!

I've never seen my army of chipmunks fight at all. Interesting.

I once saw a paralyzed chippie. I believe another chippie bite thru his spine

Chippies play for keeps!😲🚑🚨🔙🔚🔛🔝🆘️🆙️

Such drama! Who knew?! Thanks for sharing this chipmunk action film.

Holy moly, Julie! You're afraid to pick up a chipmunk? I have a great idea. Go fetch one of those eight-foot black snakes you're always discouraging from your bird nests and drop THAT on 'em.

Love the Zick/chipmunk conversion information. If only this blog post had a soundtrack: Julie cackling and angry squeaks from the roiling chipmunks. The live-action images are great, and your witty, detailed observations (open-mouth breathing, ears back, narrowed eyes) heighten the drama while keeping me laughing.

I felt like I was right at ringside!

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